In my family, we tend to have “addictive personalities”. As a kid, I would find ways to channel my insecurities. My mom was a narcissist to the extreme. Growing up in her household was difficult. She was great at playing the victim, and certain circumstances in our family life played right into her victim mentality. My dad died in a car accident when I was five. He was drunk. He was driving the wrong way down the interstate in a tiny little sports car and collided head-on with a Buick. The man he hit was paralyzed for the rest of his life. My dad’s life ended in that moment. He was 27. The rest of my life, I channeled my insecurities elsewhere. Through sports, school, reading, work, or whatever outlet I had in front of me. Once I got older, I started burying my insecurities with alcohol and pills.
It wasn’t until I became a mom that I actually began struggling with alcohol and drugs. Before motherhood, I always had another outlet for my stresses and problems. However, when I was pregnant, I was prescribed pain medication for migraines. Throughout my pregnancy, I used them very carefully and was extremely conscious of the life I had growing inside me. After my first child was born, however, I felt untethered. Suddenly, I had this other human I had to shape and mold into a responsible human. It was a lot of pressure, and my husband and I had no help. I often found the way I previously handled my insecurities and coped with my problems was no longer acceptable. I had a baby with medical problems and no help, and therefore no way to engage in the self-care I used to use to cope.
My Reasons for Drinking
The pain medication prescribed for the headaches during pregnancy became a crutch after my child was born. When I realized the medication was becoming problematic, I would try to cut back. I would drink instead thinking I wouldn’t be addicted if I swapped out one substance for another. So there would be days and sometimes weeks of little to no use followed by binges when I felt things were getting away from me. It was a vicious circle. I attended a couple of AA meetings and a couple of NA meetings. But I am not a religious person. I don’t believe in God. And I don’t believe I am powerless over my addictions.
CheckUp & Choices
That is where CheckUp & Choices would have been an absolute life saver for my family and me. While I wouldn’t necessarily call myself an alcoholic or an addict, I knew things had to change. Drinking was becoming a crutch. Pills were becoming a way to numb myself from my own disappointments. And the more I used either substance, the worse I felt and the more I wanted to drink or take pills. CheckUp & Choices offers a way to moderate your behaviors. Moms often put self-care as the last priority in their lives. But the SMART (Self-Management and Recovery Training) principles offer a non-judgmental program with simple online digital tools that can be used anywhere.
The Free Screening
If you are concerned your drinking habits may need to change, you can take this free assessment. Here you can get objective and non-judgmental feedback about your drinking. Then, if you decide something needs to change, the Choices program can help you change.
It seems things are harder than ever for moms these days. We are living in a social media-driven and fueled world where it seems like everybody else is perfect. It can make us feel like we’re failing as moms. Coupled with our wine-driven society, it seems like it has become more and more acceptable and common to have a glass of wine every day. And while a single glass of wine every day isn’t necessarily a bad thing, it can become a problem when it goes from a glass of wine every day to several glasses every day to feeling you have to have a couple of glasses of wine every day in order to cope.
CheckUp & Choices works a couple of different ways. The initial CheckUp is a single session that provides a brief, motivational intervention. It allows women to assess, understand, and resolve any ambivalence or denial of their drinking habits. It presents the data in a completely unbiased and informative way to help clarify the relationship with alcohol, it’s impact, and then determining whether moderating or quitting altogether is the best step to take.
The Choices: Moderation or Abstinence
After the initial CheckUp, moms can move onto the Choices portion of the program. This is probably the most amazing tool available to moms who might be struggling with drinking or drugs. It provides an ongoing curriculum, if you will, of education, exercises, and activities to help achieve the goal of moderation or abstaining. It helps to set safe and realistic goals and helps moms keep track of drinking. It also helps to manage triggers of drinking or drug use while tracking successes along the way.
The program is entirely self-guided and allows moms to use the online resources and tools whenever and wherever they want. It is easy, convenient, and most importantly, effective. For moms struggling to cope with the stresses of motherhood with few resources, CheckUp & Choices can help put you on the right track to taking better care of yourself, and thereby being a better wife and mother.